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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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What are some possible ethical issues regarding genetics and

Resolved Question:

What are some possible ethical issues regarding genetics and development that might arise in the future?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 6 years ago.

Some of the ethical issues regarding genetics include questions such as:

-Who controls the genetic information and who should have access to it?

-How accurate is genetic testing- in other words, what kinds of decisions can be based on the genetic information known if the information accuracy is not 100%?

-How can health care professionals, particularly doctors and nurses, counsel patients on important decisions regarding genetic information? For example, predicting disability of a child and how that will affect the parents decisions on how to best help their child if doctors cannot be sure of the genetic information.

-How does society balance the limits of genetics with the long term benefits of such knowledge?

-What effect does genetic information have in predicting human behaviors? In other words, do genetics predict someone will act in a certain way, and if so, how much of an effect do genetics have on that behavior and how much of the behavior is environmental? Can we base treatments on genetics and how accurate would those treatments be?

Also, regarding human development, the issues regarding using gene therapy to enhance humans or to change developmental issues such as preferring a certain eye color. And if you decide to change an unborn child's genetics, what are the long term effects of the genetic change not only on that child, but any future generations?

These questions highlight the problems of research developing faster than the ethical questions can be resolved.

I hope this helped you,


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